At 2:34 a.m.- five companies of the KC-MO Fire department were called to the 1100 block of Northwest 70th Place in the Northland- on a reported townhouse on fire.
The first company arrived at 2:42 a.m.- a reported "fire showing" from a 2-story structure.
Four minutes later- the response is upgraded to a "1st-alarm" assignment- and 3 more companies that included a Gladstone ladder truck- were sent to the scene.
The firefight continued in near zero wind chills and northwest winds gusting as high as 40 m.p.h. until- at 3:09 a.m.- a firefighter calls a "mayday."
Once again- a 2nd-alarm is immediately dispatched and fire crews at the scene drop their previous assignments and go looking for the trapped firefighter.
The missing crew member had fallen through a floor- but recovered and got outside the building. He was looked at by on-scene EMS personnel- but refused transport to a hospital.
Another firefighter slipped and sprained an ankle on the icy scene- but he too refused EMS transport.
The fire was brought under control at 3:30 a.m.- but not before 4 units in the building had been severely damaged.
More than a half-dozen residents were displaced by the fire- but on this bitterly cold and windy morning- neither those residents nor any firefighters left the scene in an ambulance.